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Asian gangs, schoolgirls and a sinister taboo: As nine men are jailed for grooming up to 100 for sex, the disturbing trend few dare talk about
by Sue Reid
At a pristine house on the outskirts of Derby, life is slowly getting back to some semblance of normality. The teenage girl living here is a college student who's put photos of herself dancing and laughing with her friends on several social networking websites.
A few miles away, another teenager, only a little older at 18, won a prize last month for being an 'inspirational' student at her college. A third girl, a child of 14, has a loving mother who waves her off to a Derby school each morning from a terrace home with a manicured front garden and picket fence.
The three girls from decent families have, almost certainly, never met. Yet each has become caught up in what's believed to be the biggest case of serial sex abuse ever uncovered in Britain. This week, nine men from Derby were jailed for a string of offences against these girls and 24 others whom they groomed for sex.
The gang — all but one of whom were Asian — roamed the streets in a BMW with blacked-out windows looking for girls. They plied them with vodka from bottles and plastic cups hidden under the seats, before raping or abusing them. They were not the only victims in Derby. Up to 100 girls may have been ensnared in this horror after being lured by the smartly-dressed gang into the car outside school gates, shops, coffee bars near the city's railway station and a local park.
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